Washington has had close ties with Bogota for many years, sending cash, equipment and agents under its 'Plan Colombia' to help its Latin American ally combat drug cartels and leftist militants.

Now, Santos's government is in the final stages of peace negotiations with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) guerrilla movement and hopes to sign a permanent peace deal in March.

Obama will meet the Colombian leader on February 4 in Washington, his office said yesterday.

"The leaders will hold a bilateral meeting and a commemoration of 15 years of bipartisan cooperation through Plan Colombia, the joint effort to create a safer, more prosperous future for Colombians," the White House said.

Colombia's five-decade-old conflict with the FARC is Latin America's longest ongoing civil war and has left more than 220,000 people dead.

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